St. Dunstan's Nuns Ch. 02byNigel Debonnaire©
The morning came too soon, and the clear sky promised a nice day for an outdoor Papal Audience. Sister Juliana and I were yawning through Morning Prayer and breakfast, so we changed into t-shirts and shorts and went up to the roof to do some stretching. It was 0700, and traffic was just starting pick up on the streets outside the Generalate. Rocco was digging under one of the bushes, throwing glances our direction from time to time, making a show of being busy.
"Did you hear about what happened last night when we were gone?" Sister Juliana asked.
"Sister Agatha had a fainting spell, right after we left. Sister Prudence and Sister Felicity took her to the clinic and they're keeping her for several days."
"Is it her heart again?"
"Probably. Felicity said the outlook is not good."
"Damn. She's the only one around here who can really cook."
"The Elephant was with her all night. Felicity said he was crying at her bedside."
"He has a heart after all. Good for him."
"They were together for many years."
"Maybe it means he won't be going to the Audience with us today."
"One could hope. Can I go if he can't?"
"La Rossa will probably offer the ticket to one of the older girls. If I can put a word in for you, I will, but don't get your hopes up."
She smiled as she stretched her legs, sank down, and did the splits. I copied her motion, twisting and turning. The wind was started to stir from the South, indicating a warmer than usual day. It felt good to work out the kinks, to move gracefully, to feel my muscles stretch and relax again and again. I wished we had a boom box or iPod to work out by, but they were considered extravagances in the Generalate, so I had to imagine the music from our trip to the Celestial Pyramid the night before as I moved through our routine.
My cell phone buzzed; it was La Rossa, my Superior and my mother. "What?" I said as I flipped it open.
"Nice way to start the day, Squirt. We need to get this caravan organized. Get dressed and come downstairs ASAP."
"Can it wait 5 minutes?"
"No, and tell Sister Juliana I need her to head over to the hospital. We need someone to sit with Agatha, and she's the only one who's free right now."
"What room is she in?"
Sister Juliana stopped and gave me a quizzical look. "Marching orders from La Rossa. I've got to get ready for the trip to St. Peter's; you're going to sit with Agatha for a while."
"Darn. So much for stretching on a nice morning."
"Had to end sometime."
We scurried downstairs to put on our habits and get to where we needed to be. There was a limo at the front door, which surprised me greatly. La Rossa bustled into view: "Yes, I know, it's over the top, but Monsignore Farinelli set it up. At least, I talked him out of the driver with a promise of something special later: heaven only knows where we'd end up with him controlling the transport. Sister Veronica will be driving us."
"That'll be exciting."
La Rossa slapped my shoulder. "None of your lip today, Squirt. If I know Carlo, our seats will be in a premium spot, so you'll have to give up your attitude for a while. As will I. Unfortunately, you and I will have to be on best behavior today, more so than your grandmother's High Tea parties, so don't make my life any more difficult than it is right now."
There was a look in her brown eyes that worried me, but I dared not bring it up. Mavis waddled into view, wearing a more somber dress than the evening before, dark green with comfortable dark shoes. Her hemline was at her knee, however it featured a generous cleavage that I knew would interest the Elephant. Her makeup was more restrained than last night as well, but still aggressive.
Monsignore Carlo Maria Farinelli, the Elephant, made a grand entrance in his red piped cassock, his remarkablye dark hair slicked back, his busy eyebrows seemed to be blow dried and his face was freshly shaven, cologne wafting strongly from him. A large, bear of a man, tall, rotund, with huge hands and feet, tenderly took Mavis' hand and brought it to his lips for an elegant peck. "And how is the lovely lady who are escorting to the Vatican today?"
Mavis curtsied as he kissed her hand. "Who is this noble gentleman?"
Since the Monsignore didn't speak English and Mavis didn't speak Italian, I had to translate as they exchanged pleasantries. It was more difficult than usual, as I edited their remarks for double entendres and flirtations, keeping it banal. La Rossa's eye darted back and forth, her eyebrows hunched in thought, tapping her foot as we awaited our driver.
Sister Veronica was a Roman native in her late 40's, average height, slightly plump, and a frequent target of the Elephant's attentions, which she fended off with practiced disdain. A sneer crossed her face as she saw the Monsignore, but a slight shake of La Rossa's head altered her attitude. With a generous bow, he ushered us into the limo, La Rossa sitting beside him with Mavis and I seated facing those two.
Our driver knew all the shortcuts through traffic to get us over the Tiber, and used her Italian driving skills to full extent, racing down back streets, blaring her horn at temporary obstacles, gesturing at other drivers. One sudden jolt threw Mavis face first across onto Monsignore's lap. He patted her head and caressed her shoulder, smiling unctiously at us with upturned eyebrow. She took her time getting back to her seat from that, patting herself and rearranging her stray hair as she settled back into her seat. "Mavis, you should always wear your seat belt in this country," La Rossa observed.
"Really? Whatever for?" she replied innocently. Monsignore Farinelli looked smug, Mavis looked flushed, quivering like a teenager, and La Rossa was not happy at all.
Monsignore gravely took Mavis' arm as we left the vehicle outside the entrance to St. Peter's square. La Rossa told Sister Veronica to return after the noon meal, and we hustled to catch up with them at the barricade. Once we got there and passed the metal detector, a Swiss Guard nodded to us and guided us away from the crowd spreading out across the square, along Bernini's Colonnade and toward the Papal Canopy set up near the entrance to St. Peter's. La Rossa shook her head and whispered in English: "I was afraid of this. Monsignore must have called in a lot of favors. Did you say anything to him about Mavis yesterday?"
"I only said she was an old family friend from back home. No details."
"Did you say anything to Mavis about him?"
"Only that he was called Elephante because he was such a large man."
"Shit. I hate it when this happens."
"When what happens?"
She straightened up and switched back to Italian. "I have some bad news about Sister Agatha."
I followed her back to Italian. "Really? What?"
"She's had a serious stroke. It will take a lot of therapy before she can function much at all, and there's no telling how far back she'll make it."
"Crap. She's the only one who can cook around here."
"Tell me about it. We're going to have put up with Sister Maria Alphonsa's cooking for a while."
I sighed and shrugged my shoulders. "Some of us need a diet."
"True, Squirt, and thanks for reminding me of that. I have another card up my sleeve, but we'll have to see how things go."
We arrived close to the front when a Bishop with a gold chain approached, accompanied by another Monsignore. Our Monsignore dropped Mavis' arm and greeted him with extended arms, embracing him and kissing him on both cheeks. La Rossa shook her head, and went back to English. "That's Archbishop Frederico Colonna, with Monsignore Guido Scarpelli beside him. They all grew up together in Venezia and went to Seminary together. Carlo can hardly stand they've done so well and he hasn't. He got caught juggling some figures a few years ago, so he was demoted to Firenza before he came to us. Word is Colonna's getting a Red Hat in the next Consistory, and Scarpelli will be the next Patriarch of Venice. Look at them. Bosom buddies, the best of friends forever. Wouldn't have happened last week. I'll bet he introduces Mavis before us."
"The Elephant's really on the prowl, isn't he?"
A felt a sharp rap on my skull, and felt the ire from my birth mother. "You'll use no version of that name here, dammit. It's bad enough you all call him that at the Generalate. Bring it up here and his friends might ask how he got that name. How are you going to explain that?"
I shrugged my shoulders, and made appropriate noises when introduced to his friends. He did introduce Mavis first, much to La Rossa's chagrin. Mavis curtsied and smiled at them, and they got a nice peek down her cleavage, which was apparent from the broad smiles on their faces.
We found ourselves in the front row, close to the Papal canopy and the center of the area. Monsignore preened and smiled like a politician with Mavis on his arm, who beamed at all and looked around as he pointed things out to her. La Rossa crossed her arms in front of her and sulked as organ music filled the square. It was a tinny sound, irritating, nothing like the organ I heard inside St. Peter's at Christmas, and an insult to the fine instruments back home. A double row of Cardinals assembled behind the canopy, distracted, chatting to one another, pointing at different things around the square. The two huge video screens set up in the square came to life, showing the Vatican Choir getting ready to sing.
The Papal cart rolled into site and whizzed around the square as the Pope beamed and waved at the throngs assembled there. It switched sides in the middle of the Square, passing through the crowd, before zooming up to his embarkation point. Coming up to the pavilion, he paused to greet people in the front row, and shortly I realized he was moving toward us: we were going to meet him in person if he continued his current course.
"What is your name, Sister?" He came up so quickly he startled me. I was looking into his smiling deep blue eyes, listening to his etherial tenor with a hint of Bavaria. He reached out and touched my cheek. "You are such a lovely child."
I broke his touch to bend over and kiss his ring. "Sister Mary Frances Xavier, of the Congregation of St. George, Your Holiness."
"It's a pleasure to have you here today. And this must be your superior, goodness, you could be sisters. It's a pleasure to see you again, Mother Mary Rufus."
She bent over quickly to kiss his proffered ring, and said: "Thank you, Your Holiness."
"Carlo, it's good to see you here again. It's been too long, you must come more often. Who is this dear lady by your side?"
He kissed the Papal Ring as well, beaming as he rose. "This is Signorina Mavis Hazelton from England, Holiness." Mavis curtsied as if greeting the Queen, and the Pope smiled broadly at her, his eyes flicking downward only for a moment.
"We are honored to have you with us, Mrs. Hazelton," he said in almost perfect English. She battled her eyes and almost swooned on the spot.
The rest of the audience was a blur as they progressed from one language to another, the different portions of the crowd cheering as their groups were announced The Vatican choir sung, and La Rossa grimaced. Mavis leaned over and whispered hoarsely: "Don't they have better music here? This group is awful." La Rossa put her finger to her lips, shushing her, while the Holy Father gave us a sidelong glance with a small smile on his lips.
After the Audience,we were escorted back out through the square and made our way to a small bistro for the noon meal. Settling at a table on the sidewalk, La Rossa and I looked over the menu while the older folks made their way through the restaurant to use the rest rooms. "So far, so good," she said, "that went smoother than I thought it would. Mavis must have been blown away by all the pomp and circumstance."
"Does Monsignore always get us seats this good?"
"Hell, no," she blurted loudly in English, drawing stares from the other diners. She shifted to a lower tone and back to Italian: "Like I said, he must have called in some favors. Usually he gets us ordinary general admission, and we have to scramble to get seats up close. Some of those older nuns can be vicious."
We watched the people walk down the street as the breeze played down the confined space. The nice weather was holding, and promised to be a perfect day. A couple of bishops strode by on their way somewhere, a baby struggled to escape its stroller. I took a sip of water and said: "When did you meet the Pope?"
"There's a reception for new Superiors from time to time. I met him a couple of months after we got here, chatted about five minutes."
A waiter brought a bottle of wine, placing the cork on the table. La Rossa took it and put it down. "Carlo's the sommelier. Looks like a nice vintage as far as I can tell. I'll let him do the honors with the cork. By the way, shouldn't he be back by now?"
I looked around and saw no sign of him. "Maybe he's waiting for Aunt Mavis inside?"
Her eyes narrowed. "Have a peek inside, Squirt."
The restaurant was full, and there was a line for the restrooms. I waited until a man and a woman emerged: it wasn't them. They'd given us the slip.
"Damn," La Rossa said when I related this to her, "I knew we were too lucky. I'll call him on his cell, you get the Home Office and report there may be an elephant on the loose."
Monsignore didn't answer his phone, and Sister Margherita promised to keep the Generalate alerted to his return. "They're on the lookout for him at home. Should we go look for him now?"
"No, they're probably hopped a cab and could be on their way to Pompeii for all we know. We've done all we can do; probably should have a nice lunch and keep our wits about us."
"What could they do? They can't understand each other."
"You know better than that, Squirt. I'm afraid they understand each other too well."
We had a nice lunch and met Sister Veronica in the limo at 1300. My head was buzzing a bit from the wine, but I was glad I didn't have to teach Sign at the Institute until the next day. After another hazardous ride across town, we ended up back the Generalate as the other sisters settled down for their siestas. I picked up my sunblock and dozed in the sun on the roof.
Sister Juliana woke me from my nap just before Evening Prayer. "I'm jealous."
"You got to the Audience today, had lunch with La Rossa by yourself, and now you're up here while I had to sit with Sister Agatha at the hospital all day."
"How's she doing?"
"A little better. She opened her eyes when Sister Prudence came in and smiled a little, she's also moved a little bit on her affected side."
"That's good. And if you think I've had an easy day, you're sadly mistaken."
"The Elephant kidnapped Aunt Mavis after the Audience and is AWOL."
She shook her head. "La Rossa must be in a tizzy right now." Looking at her wrist, she stood up quickly. "She'll be in even more of a tizzy if we're late for Prayer."
I got dressed and made it on time. La Rossa was guarded, which puzzled me. I thought she would be frantic after the afternoon's events, but she was only glum. Mavis was gone, which wasn't surprising, and Monsignor was absent as well, which was normal. Dinner was mostly inedible and uneventful until La Rossa beckoned me and Sister Juliana after the dolci.
"I need you to keep vigil tonight," she murmured to us.
"On the grounds. I don't want you in the Chapel, or else the Elephant will think something's up as he comes in. Keep an eye on his window and tell me when he comes in."
Sister Juliana asked: "Do you want us to call you?"
"No. Just keep an eye out, watch whatever happens and tell me everything in the morning."
"Something's up," I cut in.
"You're right, Squirt, but you don't need to know right now. Do as you're told for once."
"Like last night?"
"Sometimes I wish my sister Patty hadn't raised you and I'd done it myself. Get out of here."
Sister Juliana was happy to spend the night sitting in the broad tree outside the Chaplain's rooms. Sister Florentina loaned us her brandy flasks, which we filled with a nice grappa from the community room. It was dark when we took our places, settling on the broad, ancient limbs. The temperatures were moderate, but we wore dark jackets over our habits. We had nothing but the traffic noise from the other side of the wall and the occasional aircraft for company. "How soon do you expect them back, Franny?" Sister Juliana whispered after we were settled.
"Knowing Aunt Mavis, I imagine it won't be until after 1:00, Juli."
"Do you think they'll do anything. . ."
"Yes. I'd put money on it. Aunt Mavis has a reputation."
We sat in the tree, texting friends and keeping up with our Facebook accounts for a couple of hours. One of our Italian patrons was the owner of a local cell phone service, so we got unlimited calls and texts on our plan. La Rossa checked in a couple of times, as did Sister Margherita. I heard a rustling in the bushes around 2200, and in the dim light made out the form of Rocco Salvatore, our gardener. A quick text message to him, telling him to scram in no uncertain terms, sent him on his way, but he held up his hands, pleading profusely before he left.
2300 was the time when the lights came on in the apartment. The Elephant was still wearing his red piped cassock from earlier in the day. Mavis followed him, smiling broadly, and unzipped her dress. He went around the room lighting several large candles, before standing in front his closet to undo the many buttons of his costume. A large toothy smile dominated his face, and Sister Juliana shuddered to see it.
He wore a t shirt that revealed his shoulders under his cassock, and striped boxers. She wore a huge white bra and panties under her dress. They came together and locked lips for an eternity before breaking, his hands pawing her enormous breasts, squeezing and kneading. His hands went around behind her and she broke their embrace, shaking her head no and revealing the front clasp of her bra.
Sister Juliana gasped as Mavis' breasts came into view: they were as big as bowling balls, with huge nipples that perked into marble sized buds when they met the air. "My God, she could nurse an army! Have you ever seen such huge tits before?" she whispered.
"No, Aunt Mavis takes the prize. Look, she's kneeling in front of him. I think the Elephant's trunk is coming out."
Mavis lowered the boxers and the enormous cock came into view, making Sister Juliana gasp again. "I wouldn't begin to know what to do with that," she said, her voice quivering in fear, "would you?"
"Like the Americans would say, I'm taking the Fifth. Look, she's smiling and licking her lips."
"Bet you she can't take the end all the way in her mouth."
"Aunt Mavis has a big mouth."
"What human being could? It's bigger than a man's fist."
Mavis started licking the shaft of the Elephant's trunk and tickling the ridge around the head. Her hand reached lower to tickle the wrinkled sack, and the Elephant broke into a beatific smile like none I've ever seen. It was tough to tell through the glass, but if we could have heard what we going on, I'm sure he was purring. She started to suck the head in, and her mouth stretched farther than I thought possible: she was able to wrap her lips entirely around it and suck it into her mouth. Sister Juliana put her hand on my thigh and I swatted it away. "I like you, Juli, but there's a limit."
"It's so hard just to watch this." She started rubbing her own thigh, working up, but her position blocked her from reaching the crevice between her legs.
"Ask the Virgin to give you strength." I shifted a little to make myself more comfortable, and noticed my panties were a little damp.